About those brownouts …
Alameda’s firefighters have been pretty vocal with their concerns about the fire company brownouts that began in January 26. Now, Fire Chief David Kapler wants to give the public his side. Kapler is slated to talk to Bay Farm residents and business owners about the brownouts from 6:30 p.m. to 8:30 p.m. Tuesday, March 24 at the Harbor Bay Isle Owners Association community center, 3195 Mecartney Road.
The brownouts were implemented in order to conserve what’s left of the department’s overtime cash for this year; so far, either a Bay Farm ambulance company or a truck company from the West End have been browned out 48 of the 55 days they’d been in effect as of Saturday, and have impacted 76 responses, according to the firefighters. Firefighters have said they fear that the delays could end in tragedy; Kapler has emphasized that there haven’t been serious consequences so far, though he said there could be.
The firefighters, by the way, have started gathering signatures for a ballot measure that would require the city to honor a minimum shift staffing level of 27, which is what the department was running before the brownouts.